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Iran’s Rouhani Suggests Referendum Over Nuclear Issue as Tensions Rise With U.S.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani suggested a referendum over what the country should do regarding its nuclear programme, during a meeting in Tehran on Sunday. The comment comes in the context of rising tensions with the United States.

“In 2004, I asked the Supreme Leader to put the nuclear issue to a referendum,” he said, explaining that the idea had not materialised. He added, “Article 59 can be helpful at any stage,” referring to the article of the Iranian constitution dealing with the power to call for a referendum.

Rouhani also called for unity in the context of rising tensions with the US, saying, “my goal in this confrontation with the US is that we end up facing lower costs,” adding, “we will win, but it requires certain conditions and tools, the most fundamental of which are unity; following the same train of thought and trusting each other.”

Tensions rose higher when Tehran announced it would partially withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on May 8, one year after the United States withdrew and re-imposed sanctions on Iran.

US President Donald Trump tweeted on May 19 that Iran would meet its “official end” if it were to threaten the United States.

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Because We Say So

By Noam Chomsky

In 1962, the eminent statesman Dean Acheson enunciated a principle that has dominated global politics ever since: that no legal issue arises when the United States responds to a challenge to its ‘power, position, and prestige’. In short, whatever the world may think, U.S. actions are legitimate because they say so. 

Spanning the impact of Edward Snowden’s whistleblowing and Palestinian-Israeli relations to deeper reflections on political philosophy and the importance of a commons to democracy, Because We Say So takes American imperialism head on.


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